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Mary Ann Jenkins

This is going in a frame TONIGHT. I want to be able to read this every day.

Time is inevitably going to pass and one year from today, you can find yourself in the exact same spot you're in now, you can find yourself further away from your goal or you can find yourself closer to your goal - so where do you want to be a year from now?

Thank you Karen, for the stories, the inspiration the insight and the words.

N.Prather :)

Thanks for the inspirational post :) love reading your blog and your pictures inspire me to become a better or at least try to be a better photographer ... I think this quote might be originally from Oprah?? Not quit sure though!!

Deirdre

Thank you...just thank you:)

Susan

I never comment on blogs...ever. I wanted you to know that this post was so touching. Your drive and passion for life is inspiring. I have been waffling for months about working out and getting in shape and running in a 5 or 10k. This post made me commit...I will be running a race in 2012 and I will be getting healthier for me. Thanks for the push...I will keep you updated:)

Donna

That was very moving Karen. I love your secret weapon and find it so true. Someone once told me....Do you want to be bitter or do you want to be better, because you can't be both. Thank you for sharing your story, experience and your tears.

Lori

You never cease to amaze me. You are a wonderful person and I love your stories and writing style. Thanks for sharing your life with the rest of us. You should be very proud that you finished. Many of us would have never even tried. So you are much further than many!

kilipohi

Karen, you ARE a TRIATHLETE!!!! and no one can ever take that away from you. It is an amazing accomplishment and something that not everyone could do.

Nicole

Karen, I love, love, love reading your blog and from a single mom who is 39, I admire you for completing a triathalon!!! Way to go!!! I love your secret weapon and I think its just want I needed to hear. Thank you for inspiring and touching us with the stories you share :) xo

Cate

You totally made me cry with that story. My boyfriend does triathlons, including Ironmans, and I can tell you from watching more triathlons than I can count, that I am WAY more inspired by the people that come in towards the end than I am by the people that win. You showed that when things are tough, you can stick to it. It is way easier to quit when things are that hard, and you chose to keep going. I think that says a lot about who you are.

Thank you for sharing your story.

Oh, and I'm really disappointed that they didn't stop the awards ceremony to cheer you in. There should have been a crowd there, clapping and cheering you on.

Leonie -Australia

Well I think it's amazing you were able to make it to the finish line ! Good for you & the other girls. A+ for effort & for all the laughs you had along the way.

Jenny Schimak

I loved this account. I've never done anything like that and I seriously think I couldn't run out of sight on a dark night, and the most I've ever done was get to 5km on a treadmill. I can only dream of doing a triathlon. I think you're very brave. Thanks for the story and the photos.

Jenny Schimak

P.S. I've heard Dr. Phil use those words in your secret weapon but I'm not sure if he coined the phrase or it was from someone else.

Robin healy

BRAVO!!! Karen, you are amazing to share such feelings with all of us. Congratualations on completing the triathlon, which is way more important than finishing first or close to first. You completed it. Josh was right not finishing it was not an option. I look forward to reading your blog every morning.

Laura M

First let me say I've been following your blog for a long time. I originally found it because I was a big fan of your scrapbooking but I keep reading it because of you. I love your honesty...it is so inspiring!

Thank you for sharing this story with us. You should be so proud of yourself for finishing! It is an amazing accomplishment!

caro

Now I really wish I could be in Ireland later this year.... brilliant (true) story, Karen. I am taking on "Leap" this year so that I risk & achieve more than I did last year with "move". Have booked a 2 day hike in October in Namaqualand, as my goal. Triathlon, who knows? Well done to YOU!

kristina p

thank you for sharing this with us and congratulations for the courage to do so. and most of all, for finishing the race. in 2012, i vowed to myself to live a healthier life and you are such an inspiration. :)

Pam

I am always inspired by your posts and I think this one has to be my favorite. I couldn't run a mile if I tried and most likely would never even dream of a Triathlon but I did get on my treadmill yesterday and will again today and now your words will be in my head when I want to get off before the time is up! Thank you for sharing another wonderful part of your story!

Evia

I know exactly how you feel finishing in the back of the pack. I have finished last, seriously last, in some events but I finished. Remember some people don't finish and most people don't even start!! It's not easy but we did it. I am also one of those people who did an Ironman - yes all 140.6 miles of it. I wasn't fast, wasn't last and am definitely not what you think a triathlete looks like. It's about the adventure and accomplishment. I love reading your blog! You're such an amazing woman.

Valerie

I've said it before "You are amazing!!"...thank you for sharing such a delicate part of your life, you have once again given me hope!
Thank you doesn't seem like enough...

Sue E

Karen - Thanks for sharing those 3,529 words - I loved all of them & love that you put yourself out there. You should be so proud of yourself!

Laura

A simple "Thank you" for being you and reflecting God's beauty. And yes you are beautiful and strong.

Melissa Ladd

Thank you for sharing your story! You are a triathlete!!

I started working out and running in September and ran my first ever 5k in November. I was slow (like my friend running the 10k finished before me), but I did it! Since September I have lost 35 lbs and I hope to keep going in 2012.

I'm now going to find another 5k to sign up for, and then a 10k. Thanks for the inspiration!

Kate

You made ME cry reading this. I think God knew I needed to hear your story today. I've been struggling with my own personal battles - overwhelmed, exhausted, unable to finish - and you reminded me that I just need to keep moving forward and I'll get there eventually. I might even just have to start training for a (sprint) triathlon to help remind me. XOXO.

Sandra A

Wow! I'm in the crying group as well. It is amazing how you have such courage to put yourself out there. You are God's child, and you spread His word through your experiences.

I will get on that treadmill today if all the Christmas boxes are put away. If not, a walk in the neighborhood is in order. And I would love to run a mile with my granddaughter. And I will check back in a year. Because time will have passed. Thank you!

Tess Smith

You ARE amazing. And if it helps I cried a few times for you while reading this.

You are an inspiration, Ms. Russell. And glancing at a few comments above me it seems to be the popular opinion.

Jennifer Nelson

As a 49 year old woman who was quite athletic when I was young I am now 15 pounds overweight and out of shape and just starting to try to get back in shape. I loved reading your story and your honesty about your struggle but you did it and should be proud of yourself! Thanks for the incentive to get moving.

Addie

Thank you for sharing Karen! You did a great job and I love reading your stories! Just last night my hubby and I were talking about our last year and I got real emotional and cried about it! It was just ho-hum and I had no accomplishments, nothing to be proud of except I had one good fishing day where I caught the most salmon! Really? That's my highlight of 2011?!! Yep! In 2012 I'd like to make some changes and hope that this year will be better! And this year I go from 34 to 35 and don't want to feel like life is just passing me by. It's time to take a stand and Thank You for being an inspiration!

Elaine

So I have completed a hand full of triathlons - the sprint sort. I have 3 resolutions and one of them is to complete the Oly Loveland Lake-to-Lake triathlon in June. I loved this post. I laughed and laughed, because my hubby and I have both been there too. What a great story, and I think you are amazing - you did it! One week until I begin your class. :) Thanks for sharing.

janel

YOU lift me up! Thank you for this inspiring post!

Jennifer S

I promise to take your advice this year, Karen!! It may only be a 5K but I'm running it! LOVE you, LOVE your words and LOVE your photos! You are the BEST!!

Julie in Aust.

Yeah...me crying too! You are one very brave lady Karen and are you are very inspiring to me...

Thankyou...

Leslie

Karen, YOU FINISHED A TRIATHLON!! That automatically makes you a rockstar, sister. (Putting on my running shoes RIGHT NOW.) Rockstar.

ana roat

Are you serious??? I would have been happy with last place because it's not always all about winning (in this case) it's that you didn't give up and that makes you the biggest and best winner ever!

Beth

I thank you for this, it was an inspiration, and each pause to describe your race, when you cried, so did I. Amazing job. Thanks for sharing. Happy New Year.

Heather Crawford

You echoed some of how I'm feeling at the beginning of this new year...defeated, aggravated at myself for being in slightly worse shape than last year..nothing that I wanted to accomplish, accomplished..I struggle with my weight too..not hugely, but a around 30 pounds...I turn 40 at the end of this year in December..I feel the pressure that it's now or never..I don't want to enter another year feeling like this, much less a new decade! I love that quote and it's so true...thanks for sharing :)

Julie Pilch

You are a remarkable woman Karen a real inspiration to me. Well done for finishing the triathlon and thank you for a great quote to start the New Year. My friend and I had planned on starting running tomorrow night and now I'm definitely going to do it and keep going!

Jessica

Karen, I love reading your lengthy posts. You are an amazing storyteller!

AnnieM

You are one incredible woman, Karen Russell. This blog post has been life changing for me. "Who do I want to be one year from today?" I want to be someone who has the strength and courage and humility, and resolve of Karen Russell..that's who. I laughed, I cried and reached deep down into myself and said...'you can do this' after reading this.
Thank you, thank you.
(I wish I could hug you too, just like the woman with the big bosom)
PS. I am so moved by this that I shared it on my Twitter feed and Facebook.

Beth

Karen, I love that quote. It is so true in every way.

You NEED to get back on that wagon. As you discovered the
emotional and spiritual benefits of running and pushing yourself
and sticking to something and achieving a previously unattainable
goal are immesurable and the spiritual benefits equal or even outweigh the physical benefits.

I used to think there were things I couldn't do.....now I know there is nothing I cannot do.......running gave that to me...I gave that to myself and so can you.

12 years ago at age 38 I was 40 lbs overweight (had been for about 10 years after babies) and very out of shape. I made a decision to change my life, not just for me but for my children and my family. Turns out my decision changed the life of my entire family for the
better forever.

Now at 50 (just had my b'day Dec 26th) I am less than 2 weeks away from running my 4th full marathon, in Bermuda to celebrate my birthday. It will be my husbands 11th full marathon. He started running 3 years after i did and has since run Boston.

In 2011 I reached my goal (Oct 2) of running my 20th half before my 50th birthday. I also ran 2 fulls, one triathlon and 3 duathlons and a 200 mile relay race, in total 17 races in 2011.

I am not special. I have no talent. What I have is determination and stubborness to not let anything stop me from attaining my goals!!!

And so do you!!

lindsey

holy CRAP! you know what i say to this? YOU DID IT! and thats all that matters. the whole time i was thinking "oh yeah, i would have quit then." "oh yeah, that would totally make me quit." I cant swim, bikes hurt my bum, and im scared to try running. and im 28! you... ARE FREAKIN AWESOME.

Brandy

Thank-you so much for sharing your secret weapon, I need it today. Thank-you and all the best in the new year for you and your beautiful family!

Christa

I wonder really about God's timing sometimes... I ran my first 5k race this past Saturday. I did not reach my goal. Yesterday was a horrible day, so dissappointed in myself, so mad at the girl who just can't do it. Karen, this is exactly what I needed to hear, you did it and I'm more than proud of you. I guess I can be proud of myself too. You don't know me Karen, but I wish we knew eachother. Thanks for your honesty.
And if you wrote this on your blog back in August I would not have been able to relate, God is good, all the time. Thanks.

Nicky from Canada

Your amazing - and don't you forget it!!!

whitneybens@yahoo.com

Love your blog. LOVE this post. So raw, so honest, so wonderful. You are such a great writer!!

phyllis

Thank you for sharing! You truly are an inspiration to your readers. You write what many of us are feeling or have felt in our lives. And, thank you for being you.

kat-in-texas

You rock, Nellie!!! Maybe I can be inspired enough to go walk today....lol. Happy New Year!!!

Colleen

I'm sitting here in a complete puddle of tears. You're amazing and you've surrounded yourself with amazing friends & family. I just copied your quote & printed it out in the hopes that next year, one the verge of turning 48, I'll have a very definitive answer to the question in that quote. So today, on the verge of turning 47, I'll ponder how I'm going to get to that answer! THANKS, KAREN!!!

kate

you are so brave... more than you even know... i have to say though, the part i appreciate the most (and any mother of more than 2 children), thank you for the kegal comment!... blessings to you in 2012!

Jen

Wow... You're such an inspiration! You made me tear up, too. Thsnks for sharing your story with us...

Christa

You have always been such an inspiration! Finishing and doing what you set out to do is the accomplishment not how you placed or who finished in front of you! My frinds and I finished a half marathon recently and despite the fact that I also crossed a sparse finish line I have never felt so proud of myself as I did that day! I am not going to be in this spot one year from now, thanks for the motivation!!

Asia

Karen, thank you for having the courage to share your story. I constantly accuse my husband of always watching things that are bound to make me cry, and as I was reading your post I started to cry. That's when my faithful husband accused me of always putting myself in the path of a good cry. I can't help it if I like to read things about real life, and be inspired!

Becky T.

YOU ROCK! :-)

Kelli

I was overjoyed to see you mentioned lil' ol' me. But then I read the rest of the post and cried a bunch. As a child of a 5x ironman triathlete, and a grownup with a fear of deep open water and sweating, I can honestly tell you THAT IS NOT SYMPATHY CLAPPING!!!! That is "wow! look at you! I'm standing here breaking a sweat clapping for you as YOU swim, bike, and run your way to your goals. You have will power! You have guts! You have endurance! You will have accomplished something you didn't think you could. I have sore hands from clapping! YOU are amazing!"
Whether you come in first or last, you still came in! You showed up! You did it!

Amy Sheffer

At the risk of sounding like a freaky stalker, I absolutely adore you, Karen Russell! Thanks for being so REAL and sharing so much of yourself. You are a beautiful person, inside and out. Congratulations on setting yourself a goal, especially such a challenging one, and meeting it!

teresa b

Amazing share Karen...I know I'm no one..but I'm really proud of you!! Your courage and strength is amazing!! Such an inspiration!!! <3

Traci Shanks

This - THIS - is what I needed to see today. Today, when just going the distance for the second day on a new eating plan is difficult. Today, when the thought of going upstairs to work out seems ridiculous, because I can't imagine that I could be successful at it long term. Today, when the new year is just that - new - and it has so much promise.

Your post brought it home. I laughed at the funny faces, was amazed at intricacies of a triathlon, started shivering when you were in the water, cried... cried... cried with you (and am so thankful for the woman with the ample bosom!) and CHEERED when you crossed the finish line. You did it. You did it. You did it. Who cares if you were 180th? You lapped all those people who never got off the couch. You are AMAZING.

Thank you so much for not giving up that day, for showing us all it can be done, and for posting this today. I think God knew I needed it.
And Josh Downs? You are amazing too.

I'm posting this on the wall upstairs by the treadmill, and I'm underlining Josh's response. Not finishing - let alone not starting - is not an option.

God bless
Traci

Kelly

Amazing amazing amazing Karen! Now, could you come over and help me get my derrier moving! :)
You are my inspiration.....in both ways.....creatively and spiritually. God Bless You!
P.S. Those pics of your sis really look like Ross's girlfriend......right?!

martha hernandez

you are amazing. please don't ever stop sharing your stories and your faith in God with your blog readers. you touch so many hearts with your words and have faith that you are where you need to be right here and now and you're touching other's that need your inspiration! i am one of those!

happy new year to you and your family.

Cyndi

Girl, YOU FINISHED A TRIATHLON! This is one of my favorite posts ever, and I didn't think I could possibly like you any more than I already did. Happy 2012. :)

Rae Clevett

I'm so proud of you. It doesn't matter what happened along the way, the only thing that matters is that you tried and not only that....you finished it! That is a huge accomplishment. I too struggle with my weight. I could eat anything I wanted and until the age of 30 weighed 115 lbs. Then I started gaining weight. I had never developed good eating or exercise habits. I gave up, gained weight throughout my 30s and 40s and thought I was too old to do anything about it. When I met you at Photo Express in Maple Ridge, BC for a photography class (that got me started on my journey and have been a photographer now for a few yrs...so thank you for being the kick-off point from hobbyist to professional)I was 50 lbs heavier. Then I gained another 20. This yr I joined Weight Watchers & have lost 40 lbs so far, go to the gym, do Zumba twice a wk and just did a 5 km hike up a mountain and I'm 54. So never say never...just keep trying!

Thx for sharing bits of your life with us readers. I read, I relate and I enjoy your blog.

Jennifer O.

You are amazing! You may have finished at the end of the pack but you finished. And more importantly ... you started! Something many of us never have the courage to do ... much less to finish! I hope you feel proud. Inspiring!

Melanie

You brought me to tears reading this Karen. I am so proud of you for completing this. It took incredible strength to keep going with everything that was trying to break your spirit. You should feel not only proud you completed a triathlon (which most people cannot say) but also you showed the incredible strength you have to just keep going.

Laura M.

One of my favorite posts from you ever! Thank you so much for sharing this story. I started crying right at the point where you started crying for the first time. For some reason this story reminds me of Peter walking on water and how he cried out to Jesus when he became afraid. So many people focus on the fact that he doubted and began to sink, but really he was the only one to get out of the boat and walk on water. You did it, Karen! Victory is yours!

lynn

Karen!
I want you to run with me sometime. The next time you are in the Portland Area. Call me and we'll run.:) I have been reading your blog forever. A friend of mine introduced me to it. You lived in Col. Cty. I live in St Helens..503-737-5557!!!

Melissa Cummings

I'm facing a few things in my own life right now (took a buyout at work, so in need of finding a new career, weight issues, etc.) and I don't know if it's timing or what, but this hit in just the right spot. I was crying right from when you said you first cried. Crying from understanding what you were feeling and from being so proud of you even though I don't know you and from feeling inspired. This is a blog post that is going to stick with me. And something I'm going to use to keep myself going this year. Thank you!

mandy friend

karen! i'm not sure if i love you or am pissed that you make me cry every other post! i laughed (and adore you) for sharing the peeing on yourself part. i would have too! and the inspiration is just amazing! i have been battling weight since the last baby (3 years ago!) and i have to say, it meant SO much when Cali told me you had noticed i'd lost a little at target that day! i despise running...but i WILL loose it all this year! thanks girl...

Charlene Austin

This was such a great read. You had me in tears several times. WOW.....you go girl!

Stephanie @ La Dolce Vita

It doesn't matter how you did it, or how many times you cried - you did it! I am so proud of you Karen. A gorgeous and inspirational post, and just right for the new year. Happy New Year to you and your family. May 2012 bring you health, happiness, prosperity and the safe return of your husband. xoxo

Kelly Morrris

I have to say that I don't follow your blog per-se, but I am Kelli's neighbor and I found it on her wall, so..... I was just going to scan your post but I found myself reading every word because it was the story of you facing adversity and most people (including myself) would have quit while they were still in the water. You didn't and you are AMAZING because you stayed with it! Good on you girl!! And thank you for posting about the good and bad feelings, the ups and downs, and the battle... I found it, and you, VERY INSPIRING!!!
Thank You!
~Kelly

Davean

I think it is amazing that you finished (regardless of what number). I am 39 also, can't swim or ride a bike and if I had to run one mile, I would probably collapse! (I could hardly run the mile in high school under the time they wanted and I was very thin back then). I am pregnant right now and some days it is hard to even stand up for just a few min! I hope to get into better shape once the baby is born.

Julie

Darn it! You made me cry. So glad you processed this experience and shared it with us. It's poignant and inspiring. Thank you. I mean it. THANK. YOU.

tara pollard pakosta

Karen! YOU DID IT!
who cares how, you actually DID IT!
way to go! You should be proud!
it's a good story though and it had me crying and laughing and cheering you on~
Karen, I am SO PROUD OF YOU! that is an amazing accomplishment and one I know I could NEVER
do! I am cheering you on, get back at it girl and get to where you feel amazing because you sure ARE!
love,
tara

Stacey H

I've checked your page daily thru the holidays...waiting patiently for a new post. I have to say...it was worth the wait!!

Your AMAZING!

Your STRONG!!!

Your FABULOUS!

Your INSPIRATIONAL!!!

Your TALENTED!!!

And you always have a way of making me smile or laugh. Thanks for keeping it real!!! Thanks for sharing your life and your family with the rest of us!!

And I think Josh Downs is one lucky guy!!!

Doris

I know I could never do this! I remember watching the Iron Man Triathalon on TV once and watching the person crawling to the finish line. You did on still standing! Good for you!

Robin

LOVE LOVE LOVE YOU!!! And as always, thanks for your posts and for your inspiration to be all I can be. Making some goals because of you and will see where I am in a year.

God Bless You and Your Family... AND especially JOSH DOWNS

Colleen Barron

Wow! I cannot tell you what an inspiration you are. You are not afraid to share your thoughts and fears and that's what helps me feel like I know you...even though we've never met. I could never imagine the strength it took just to finish. You should be very proud of what you have accomplished. You have my admiration.

Yolanda

Dang. Just cried like a baby reading that. Because I *know* I would have had exactly the same experience. I'm proud of you for finishing. And for writing about it here.

Jenn A.

What an awesome, inspirational post! I am just starting my 8th month of pregnancy with my first baby (a girl!) and I cannot wait to get back to some real, serious workouts. I know at some point in that process I will feel like you did in the water, after getting out, on the bike, and on your second lap of the run. And I will try to remember what your post above teaches-that quitting when things get tough is the only true way to fail in life.

Congratulations on setting a goal and sticking to it!

k8

I know that you know that you didn't have to share that...but that's who you are and that's why we love you so....

(Josh's Christmas message just made me cry...I can only imagine what it did to you!)

Kellie

To me who cares if you were 180th out of 183 because youu did and you finished! All while I was sitting on my couch doing nothing! ;) I have already started though and hopefully I will have the strength, endurance, and COURAGE to do something like that myself one day...good for you!

Diane W.

Thanks for sharing this story, so inspirational.

Kathy

At least you have the guts to train and want to do a race....I have no desire and could never do what you did even with all the dramas. You should definately be proud of yourself no matter what and for not giving up and completing it. You would have felt worse only half doing it. No matter where you came you actually did a race. It certainly is a story to tell people that's for sure. Lots of love, Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia

Yvonne

Karen, I read all 3529 words, and as with many of your posts, end with tears in my eyes or on my cheeks. You did it. You completed it. And the place you finished didn't matter, b/c to those that matter you could have finished first, and they (and we) couldn't be prouder. I started to train for a marathon to complete before my 40th birthday in October, and didn't finish the training or even attempt the marathon. That's defeat.

Kerry

I don't normally comment on blog posts - but I couldn't read your post and not respond. You should be so proud of yourself for committing to do a triathalon and completing it!!! Way to go.

Sherri L

Karen, you are inspirational! Congrats! Here's to all the great things 2012 will bring - this story of accomplishment will bring many to start and complete a goal this new year. God bless your family (and Josh) for his (and your family's) sacrifice to serve his country. Thank you!

Michelle Voelker

That is one awesome story Karen! Love you, love your spirit, love your friends! You know what I was thinking while I read that? At every step of the way, you did what you needed to do, awesome.

I love the quote, going to print that out - I have told many people a much shorter version regarding weight loss (being an RD). It's not what you have lost by next week, but where you are in a year, or 5 years. I've been living that as well, with nasty arthritis. 4 years ago I was 25 pounds heavier... and here I am, healthy and feeling good. I can't wait to see where you are in 4 more years!

laura

I can't even begin to describe how that has made me feel....
I did cry several times while reading....
and now I am going to put on my walking shoes and get this 53 year old chubbie butt out that door.....
Thank you Karen....

Laura
GP

JaYne

I think I will print this out and put it somewhere so that when the "I can'ts" hit me, I will read this and know that I can.
So inspirational. I felt your tears, your achy muscles and your big heart of determination. Amazing!

Angie

You ROCK Karen--I just love reading your blog, you are truly an inspiration!! Thank you so much for sharing your story!!
PS...I cried to a few times reading your story! :)

Linda Lynch

You are a FABULOUS woman. Wow, what you can you just makes me want to run longer and harder. I don't even know you and my heart is bursting with pride. And I'll be Josh
Down's heart is bursting more than mine !! WTG Karen !!

Tracy

Karen, you are a strong and amazing person. Through sharing your story not only of your triathlon but of your life, your photography, your faith...you inspire more people than you will ever know. Jeff will be running in the Boston Marathon this April...a dream he has had since he started running in 2008. He would say to you..."you finished and that is all that matters." Thank you for that inspirational quote...I need to write it down so I see it every day. Happy New Year Karen...I am so blessed that God has made our paths cross in this life.

Anita G.

Love your blog!! I definitely teared up reading that. You really are an inspiration and should be soo proud of yourself for committing and finishing! That is HUGE! And I'm so checking out this Andy Stanley person!

Alison

Doesn't matter what your number was, I'm proud of you for doing it at all!

Dawn S

You are so AMAZING...so INSPIRING...and so Human. I feel so grateful that you share so much of yourself with your readers. Thank You. Thank You. Thank You. Looking forward to reading all about your new journey...Good Luck.

Andrea

Thank you.

Thank you so much for being my inspiration for so many years. You dont know me, yet you inspire me daily. I can not ever wait to read your posts!

I linked to you in my post today:

www.andrea-brownphotography.blogspot.com

Wendy T.

Karen, I've read your blog for many years now (I took the first online version of the Photographer's Workshop) and I think I've maybe commented one other time. But this post deserves a comment!!! I cried a few times for you in this post, too. If it had been me doing that triathlon, I probably would've given up and then regretted it for the rest of my life. You didn't. You finished it! And that's amazing!!! You are awesome and I thank you for sharing this story.

Jen Brown

You are such an inspiration Karen! Thank you for sharing your story. Hugs from your sausage legged sister. :)

Tracy Dayett

As I sat here reading this entry I was moved to tears. You inspire and uplift me with your strength, humor, wit, and something so many have lost...honesty...Thank you!!

gina harpur

Such a great story! You are such an inspiration! Karen, I think you have enough fans & alumni of Snapshots that you should hold your own Triathlon (Sprint, only please) that would raise money for our soldiers (or their families). Count me in!!!

diane herman

You are one special woman Karenxxx

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